(OTTAWA) Canada is considering buying a fleet of military surveillance planes from US aerospace giant Boeing without going through a competitive bidding process.

The Federal Department of Supply says Canada has sent a letter to the US government requesting more information, including a price, for up to 16 P-8 Poseidon aircraft and related equipment.

The department says the request follows discussions with industry and close allies about potential replacements for the Royal Canadian Air Force’s aging CP-140 Auroras.

The department says these consultations identified the Poseidon as the only aircraft that could meet Canada’s requirements for a new surveillance aircraft.

The government says the petition does not commit Canada to buying the planes made in the United States.

“The final decision will be based on offered capacity, availability, pricing and benefits to Canadian industry,” the department said in an unsigned statement released late Monday afternoon.

However, the federal government announced a series of untendered military purchases.

Defense Minister Anita Anand notably announced earlier this month that Canada will accelerate the purchase of new anti-tank, anti-aircraft and anti-drone weapons for the military.

Montreal-based aircraft manufacturer Bombardier, which won a trade dispute against Boeing five years ago, has expressed interest in offering its own plane as a potential replacement for the Auroras.

This involves meetings with Ms. Anand and the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, François-Philippe Champagne.

“Canada has the opportunity to leverage its aerospace industry to deliver a multi-mission aircraft that will be the standard for decades to come, at home and abroad as an export,” the carrier said in a statement. word of Bombardier, Mark Masluch.

“Bombardier has spoken with Ministers Anand and Champagne, and looks forward to a response on when and how we can present an offer, and a solution that Canadians will be proud of for decades to come.” »